Offering our gifts to God
The meaning of stewardship
St. Joseph’s Catholic Church
STEWARDSHIP – it’s the giving of our Time, Talent and Treasure back to God.
Think about this for a moment….is this what Stewardship means to you?:
“When He looked up He saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and He noticed a poor widow putting in two small coins. He said, “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest: for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.” (Luke 21:1-4)
We are all called to be stewards. Then, if so, how can we give back a percentage of what God has given to us? How can I learn to be a good steward?
“What shall I render to the Lord for all his bounty to me? (Ps. 116:12)
Consider the Stewardship of:
Time. For just one hour a week on Sundays, God is there for you. Are you there on Sunday for Him? Where can you find more stewardship time to give back to God? For every hour spent watching TV you could spend it answering the phone for St. Vincent de Paul. Do you enjoy being outside? You could spend an hour gardening at St. Joseph’s “rose garden” or at the cemetery grounds. Do you have a few minutes before or after Mass to be available to greet people or to hand out bulletins? Is decorating your passion? The Altar Society always need help decorating the sanctuary. You could also spend an hour assembling worship aids, where help is always needed. Are you already a Extraordinary Minister? Think about how you might give extra time taking Communion to the sick and homebound. You might even have an idea for a new ministry, support group, organization, or event. Your enthusiasm and energy can help our parish grow in community and love!
Talent. Use your gifts and talents for the good of the parish. God has given each person unique gifts and talents that are intended to be shared. Like public speaking? You might get involved as a lector. You can share your deep devotion to the Eucharist by becoming an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. Do you enjoy teaching? Maybe you could help in religious education. Do you play an instrument or like to sing? The choir could use you. Do you like to cook and bake? St. Joseph’s many events involve meals and could use your help. Or, it would be nice for a new mom not to have to cook for a few days. How about shopping? Can you pick up some extra cans of food for the Food Pantry? Any expertise----business, finance, public relations, photography, grant writing, engineering, carpentry, and building maintenance can all find a place in our parish.
Treasure. You know how expensive it is to run your own home. Our parish faces the same high costs and depends on its parishioners to help meet those expenses. Do you increase your contributions each year as the cost of living rises? Giving to the Church is more than a financial obligation. It should never been seen as a burden, but a way to return God’s love to the community. Once you recognize that everything you have is a gift from God, you see that giving generously to continue God’s work in the parish is an essential part of your spirituality.
“Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put in your lap.” (Luke 6:38)
“Tithing” is the intentional setting aside of 10% of your income to give back to God. Maybe that seems like a lot, but look at it this way. As an example, let’s pretend God gave you $10. God wants you to keep 90% ($9) and return to him only 10% (only $1!) of what He has given you. Does your dollar really make a difference? Yes, every little bit adds up. You might think, “What can one dollar do?” But, what if everybody just gave one extra dollar a week? Just think what could that mean to St. Joseph’s. Here’s another way to look at what your treasure could mean: $40 would buy three pizzas/semester or $80 buys six pizzas/year or one Starbucks coffee/week.
The financial life blood of the parish comes from the weekly collection. Offering envelopes are provided for your convenience in giving and are always available for new parishioners and those who wish to receive. St. Joseph’s is blessed with generosity of parishioners’ treasure, not only to the regular Sunday collection, but for special collections throughout the year. Your generosity is appreciated to the periodic Building Fund collections help with the ever-increasing costs of on-going expenses for maintaining all the parish buildings and their equipment (i.e., plumbing, air conditioning) and upkeep of the grounds and parking lots.
Stewardship is when all parishioners are generous with their time, talent and treasure that a community grows. Such is the story of St. Joseph’s. Many people of all age ranges are so generous. The ministries and activities of the parish demonstrate parishioners’ commitment. We cannot stand still!! Our goal and hope is that the commitment to actively sharing in parish life will grow even stronger.
Note: In keeping with good stewardship practices, St. Joseph’s publishes quarterly financial reports to inform you of the financial health of the parish. The pastor also relies on the active Parish Finance Council to review monthly financial statements and to regularly advise him of the financial management of the community.